Even now, I never make this dish the same way twice. Much of this variation comes from the fact that I usually use eyeball measurements for all the ingredients. Be careful of variations in spice strengths from batch to batch, especially with cayenne. For the garam masala, I use Julie Sahni's recipie from Classic Indian Cooking (Morrow 1980). Below are my best estimates of quantities; let me know if you think I goofed.
If you can't find an ingredient locally, try Penzeys.
|3 tbs.||Canola oil|
|2 tsp.||Whole cumin seeds|
|31 oz. (2 cans)||Chick peas|
|4 tsp.||Garam masala|
|2 tsp.||Freshly crushed corriander seeds|
|1 tsp.||Ground cumin seed|
|1/2 tsp.||Onion seeds|
|1/2 tsp.||Ground fenugreek|
|1/4 tsp.||Black pepper|
|2 tsp.||Dried cilantro|
|2 tbs.||Tomato paste|
|1 1/2 tsp.||Tamarind concentrate|
|1 tbs.||Lemon juice|
|2 tsp.||Distilled vinegar|
Heat a 10- or 12-inch (nonstick) frypan over medium heat and add the oil. Add the cumin seeds and turn heat to high. Stir until seeds darken. Add onions and keep stirring until onions turn salmon-colored at edges. Then crush garlic onto onions and add chick peas. Keep stirring until a few chick peas brown slightly.
Now pour in enough water to cover the solids in the pan. Add all remaining ingredients. Reduce heat to medium. Stir periodically and add water as needed to maintain consistency of thick soup. When chick peas are soft, crush about half of them with the back of your spoon or a potato masher.
Yields 4 average-sized portions. Serve over Basmati rice. If desired, serve with papads and a pale ale.
Permission is granted for individuals to use this recipie and pass it along to others provided that it is not used commercially and that it is not altered and retains this copyright notice.